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P HOT OGR A P HY BY T K O U T AUGUS T
O U T AUGUS T
W
hen a porn star turns ¸8, you say it
in the vay you might describe ran
cid groceries. Oh, no, this milk has
turned: Michael Lucas curdled through his ¸8th birthday recently,
vhich is ,o in porn years. But even vell past the standard expira
tion date, he`s having fun. The escortturnedCLO threv a lavish
party at his threestory Chelsea penthouse, vhich sits atop a ,,
cent store and across the street from the Big Booty Bread Com
pany. The huge living room vindovs and rooftop patio ofer vast
vievs of Midtovn; Lucas can see the Lmpire State Building vhen
ever he vantsbut just the tip.
Although he doesn`t drink alcohol, he`s relaxed and loose
among a small circle of his friends. He invited the actor Alan Cum
ming; he invited 0@6 actor Gerald McCullouch; he invited the über
social drag queen Lady Bunny. None of them shoved up. Lucas, as
alvays, is unafected.
These are his guests: his models, his housekeeper, his publi
cist, his creative director, his art dealer, his lavyer, and his person
al trainer. Lucas lives in a very insular vorld.
°He`s alvays been his ovn special creation,"
says birthday party attendee Adam Ieldman,
the theater critic for AVZR <ba ;Rd F\_X vho
has knovn Lucas since he arrived in Nev York
in ¡,,,. °He`s very loyal to his friends, but he`ll
crush you if you turn on him. Ruthless. He`s al
vays been a little Russian mafa, a little Zsa Zsa
Gabor. He aches to be Marlene Iietrich."
Lucas`s party is the night of the Hookies,
an avards shov for escorts. Lucas is present
ing later, but his days of escorting are behind him. °I should get a
lifetime achievement avard," he deadpans. °Or tvo."
His birthday party vas not his actual birthday; that day, a veek
or so earlier, vas very diferent. A tovn car drove him to Avenue Z
in Brooklyn, near Coney Island, vhere his grandmother lives. He
does not believe in God and isn`t a practicing Jev, but he vore a
Star of Iavid necklace. His grandmother pinched his cheeks,
yanked him by his forearm, sat him dovn, and made him eat beet
borscht mixed vith heavy dollops of sour cream. She gave him
some caviar and tried to give him a silver pocket vatch. Her small
apartment is flled vith pictures of Lucas. She took him across the
hall to the ,¡yearold neighbor vho ovns a piano, so she could
play for her grandson. That vas the last time Lucas cried, he notes,
before uttering the most Michael Lucas thing possible: °Typically,
I only cry in my dreams, not physically."
He vas visiting his grandmother to give back some jevelry
he`d had to remove from her during her recent stay in a hospital.
She lives across the street from a Coney Island hospital, but Lucas
had moved her to a private room at Weill Cornell Medical Center
in Manhattan, vith three Russianspeaking nurses he paid $¡z
per hour to vatch over her z¡ hours a day for three veeks ¸that`s
$6,o¡8 total). As ve vere heading back to Manhattan, he sighed
and said, °To be old and alone is a terrible thing." He shrugged
aside the thought and buried himself in BlackBerry texts.
His staf is trying to surprise him vith a birthday cake ¸Lucas
doesn`t eat sugar, so it`s actually a candle stuck in a piece of grilled
salmon). Their present: a $¡o Boston Market gift card, because
°it`s the only thing you can get someone vho loves bufets and
has everything," as one stafer put it. °I don`t like vhen they make
me parties," Lucas says. °It makes it tough to order them around
after."
The last voman he had sex vith vas the porn actress Savannah
Samson, in zoo6, vhile she vas menstruating. °She vas a guy," he
says, °kind of going for it." He speaks fondly of the frst man vho
ever sucked his ,inch dick. °A tall guy, a model I met in Moscov
at gay clubs in ¡,,¡. I vas a mouse next to him. He vas the most
beautiful man I`ve ever seen in my life," Lucas explains, before add
ing vith equal parts nonchalance and absurdity: °He lost his eye
in a frevork on Nev Year`s Lve one year, after marrying a fat rich
oligarch. His life is sad nov."
Lucas has come a long vay from his arrival in ¡,,, at JIK air
port vith a small suitcase and $¡¸o cash ¸he immediately began
vorking as a $¸ooperhour escort, saving up enough to create
Lucas Lntertainment the next year). Nov he`s established enough
to namedrop vith confdence. He likes saying that he goes to the
same gym as Sam Champion, Anderson Cooper, Marc Jacobs, and
Calvin Klein ¸the day I tagged along to his morning vorkout, he lit
erally bumped into Cooper). He says that his smoothie recipe vas
given to him by Jacobs himself: six egg vhites, a banana, berries,
and a scoop of vanilla protein povder.
Ten years ago, Lucas met Richard Winger at a holiday party
¸their penthouse is Winger`s, vho has lived there since ¡,8¡).
They announced their marriage in zoo8. Lucas still calls Winger
his boyfriend, although he vears his vedding ring during porn
shoots.
It`s Winger`s standingas a selfdescribed °international
businessman"that gets Lucas invited as a plusone to the zoth
anniversary fundraiser for the International Gay and Lesbian Hu
man Rights Commission. Lucas is the second most famous person
in the room, behind Kenneth Cole. People approach him asking
him to pose for photos. A gaggle of middleaged men seated in
the rov behind him gossip and stare vhile tossing back glasses of
vhite vine.
He leans back during an applause and vhispers to me, vhile a
giant S_ebQWUis shovn on a screen: °They`re so afraid to say that
it`s the Islamic countries in the Middle Last and Africa that are
responsible for all these death penalties. It`s ridiculous, this little
piece of shit organization. If you vant to speak the truth, speak all
the truth."

IN A LATER CONVERSATION Lucas speaks plenty of his truths.
He`s been a bit giddy this year over his latest flm, :R[ \S 6`_NRY
vhich is the frstever porn shot entirely on location in Israel vith
an allJevish cast. He has set up a gay Israeli travel venture as
vell and likes to talk about hov much good he is doing to change
people`s perception of the vartorn region and its people. So I ask
him vhat seems like a natural follovup: When vill he make an all
Muslim gay porno? To help change vievs of those people as vell?
°I`d shoot Muslims, but I don`t vant them to be decapitated,"
“Who is Michael Lucas if he’s not a
hot porn star? How stupid and
primitive and unfortunate and
tragic and bitter, this aging,
the great waste of life.”
O U T AUGUS T
he says. °And I don`t vant to be decapitated either
even though I`m sure that vould get a lot of press.
Muslims don`t vant to be in porn."
I ask him if, as a Jev, he considers Muslims his
enemy. °The only vay to have no enemies is never to
speak my mind," he says. °I don`t get hate mail from
Muslim groupsI get hate mail from liberal groups
vho don`t like criticism. I hate Muslims, absolutely.
It`s a horrible, horrible religion. It`s a plague."
Then: °People ignore me the vay they ignore
Rush Limbaugh because he`s a drug addict. Michael
Lucas is just a porn star. People take time to call me
irrelevant. They vrite three detailed pages on a blog
about my irrelevance."
He leans close tovard me. °There are moments in
life vhen silence is your fault and truth is your respon
sibility," he says frmly. °The religion, the institution,
the system of Islamthey are as talented and creative
and passionate as anyone else. But they`re stuck in a
horrible lie, brainvashed from birth to death. And
nov they have been stuck in time since the ,th cen
tury. They have not contributed to civilization in any
vay, in any feldpolitical thought, science, music,
architecture, nothing for century after century. What
do they produce? Carpets. That`s hov they should
travel because that`s the only vay they travel vithout
killing people."
Lucas`s tendency to speak his mind has not gone
unnoticed. His opinion pieces, often bristling vith
indignation at the West`s accommodation vith Is
lam, are published in AUR .Qc\PNaR. =N]R_ magazine
anointed him a °person to follov" on Tvitter. And in
June he vas invited to Oxford University`s prestigious
debating union to argue in SNc\_ of the notion that the
gay rights movement has undermined family values,
alongside the national director of a religious pres
sure group, Christian Voice, that provides links on its vebsite to
°exgay" services. With typical audacity, Lucas began his case by
declaring that he despised his codebater and vas proud to belong
to a movement that °has undermined family values and continues
to undermine them." The gay rights movement, he argued, should
stop being on the defensive. Like a gay Larry Ilynt, he is as comfort
able arguing politics as he is sex. His Tvitter feed is often a mash
up of the tvo. °What does Rihanna knov about being 'so hard`?...
on the set about to flm my scene and I,I,I, I`m so hard...that Lucas
rain just vont let up," he vrites in one entry. In another, °Just vent
to antiIsraeli demonstration in front of consulate. Palestinians 8
left ving crazies vent nuts vhen i came v¡huge Israeli ßag."
PERHAPS BECAUSE OF all those years being valked on as an es
cort and a freshoftheboat immigrant, Lucas seems to delight in
being the boss these days, even being a bit condescending.
He invites tvo young menone a z¡yearold blond escort
vith an afected patrician accent, the other a z¡yearold tat
tooed black kid vho took an ¡8hour bus ride from
Ietroitto flm a quick porn movie. The actors`
names are Kyle and I.B., but they go by Logan Ste
vens and Ace Rockvood.
°Who is your favorite American author?" Lu
cas asks them. They look dumbfounded. Lucas es
pecially enjoys calling out Americans on their lack
of knovledge of their ovn culture. So he svitches
to an easier question: °Who is the Secretary of
State right nov?"
The black kid fdgets before saying, °Obama?"
The interviev ends. Lucas instead valks them both through
the very mechanical, very choreographed, very unchanging rou
tine of the video shoot. The shoots are almost a vays the same, the
same actions in the same order, shot from the same angles. Lucas
is the Michael Bay of porn. °More: More:" he barks at an actor vho
is experiencing nearfull goatse. °Give me more: I knov you have
more: Give it to me:"
It`s that capacity for churning out flm after flmz6 in zoo,
that has made him vhat ;RdF\_X magazine called the °last of the
Nev York porn moguls." He says he has ¡¡ fulltime employees and
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“people ignore me the way they
ignore rush limbaugh because
he’s a drug addict. michael
lucas is just a porn star.”
CONTINUED ON PAGE
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STORE INFO pays his actors around $¡,¸oo to $z,ooo per movie. In many vays,
this political, controversial, mysterious Russian Jevish immigrant
embodies Nev York as much as, say, Joe Irancis and his 4V_Y`4\[R
DVYQ empire of tan lines and intoxicated skanky plastic embodies
Los Angeles. The closest second to Lucas in Nev Yorka very dis
tant one at thatis perhaps Ianiel Nardicio, the marketing direc
tor for =YNfTV_Y vho rides around tovn in a vindovless pink audi
tion van vhen he`s not throving infamously debauched undervear
parties.
°It`s great that the vorld has Michael Lucas," says Nardicio.
°But I vould never vant to hang out vith him. He used to be out
rageous in a funny vay. Nov he`s outrageous in a desperate vay.
I`m glad he exists because I think most gays are boring, and he`s
certainly not. But he`s ¡oo/ illusion. He`s not Hugh Hefner, and
he never vill be. If it vas going to happen for him, it vould`ve hap
pened by nov."
Yet there`s plenty of future for Lucas. Lven at ¸8, he still holds his
ovn as an actor. He can spit vith the bountiful intensity of a camel.
And he thinks up stuf even the most committed of Internet porn
junkies may not have, er, come across. In one shoot, he got the inspi
ration to take the condom of his dick and shove it deep into the ass
of the guy he had been fucking. °Nov give it back to me," he grunt
ed. His actor, Junior Stellano, balanced backvard on his shoulders,
his ass bobbing and puckering in front of Lucas`s face, obliged and
pushed the condom back out for Lucas to nibble and then tug free.
(Later I mention that the scene reminded me of Karl Rove, vho vas
nicknamed °turd blossom" by President Bush. °You have a peculiar
mind," Lucas tells me, °but I like that you knov your politics.")
After the shoots, I ask him hov much he thinks about turning
¡o. °A lot," he says. °It is smart to think about this, as a business
man. I built my career on looks. My life is in the feld of looks; my
career is based on it. I have a problem vith aging. I am not at peace
vith it."
He looks avay, out the vindov. Only he knovs if he`s being
introspective, or embarrassed, or merely bored. °Who is Michael
Lucas if he`s not a hot porn star?" he says. °No matter hov rich you
are, hov smart you are, if you`re knovn for one thing and you lose
that, you lose the vhole fght. Hov stupid and primitive and unfor
tunate and tragic and bitter, this aging, the great vaste of life."
AT HIS BIRTHDAY PARTY a fev folks remove themselves from
the action and take sanctuary in the quiet of the rooftop. His lav
yer, Marvin Srulovitz, vas there telling a racist joke: °What`s the
diference betveen a straight Hispanic and a gay Hispanic? Tvo
beers."
But more important, there vas Winger, arguably the love of
Lucas`s life, sneaking some cigarettes and running his fngers
through the branches of some dead potted trees. Winger is a very
sentimental manplants, pets, books, knickknacks (he still has
the stufed animals of his childhood). °We used to use this roof all
the time," he tells me. °But Iire Island came, and ve forgot about it
and let it fall apart. It`s sad to see these trees dead nov. The vinter
killed them."
I ask him if Michael is the same that night as he is on the
nights that it`s just the tvo of them together. °It`s very American to
change every fev years," says Winger, vho is Austrian. °Nev car,
nev apartment, nev boyfriend, nev city. I`m so glad to have found
someone vho isn`t like that."
Michael Lucas is not about to change. n
“INDUSTRIAL PORN & MAGIC” CONTINUED FROM PAGE